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Wednesday, October 15 2014
Job 6: Innocent Until Proven Guilty
"The judges shall make diligent inquisition"
The legal right of "innocent until proven guilty" has been known and proclaimed since the earliest of times. The now-familiar "scales of justice" and "lady justice" originated long ago - in surprising places.
"Lady Justice" was an invention of the ancient Greeks and Romans who knew her as "Iustitia" (the Latin word from which the English word "justice" originated), Themis (the Greek goddess of Counsel) and Dike (the Greek goddess of "moral order"). The photograph shows the Roman version "lady justice" with her familiar scales on the wall of the Courthouse in Tehran, Iran (the ancient Persian Empire became known as Iran in the 1920s; see The Prophet Daniel: The Hand Writing On The Wall and The Prophecies Of Cyrus of Persia).
The principle of "innocent until proven guilty" was known long before the Greek and Roman versions of it however. The LORD (Who was and is Jesus Christ - see Genesis 1: In The Beginning Was The Word and The Kingdom Of The LORD God) founded the Israelite justice system based upon proof.
Witnesses were required for conviction - the word of an accuser alone (apart from evidence) was not greater than the accused person who denied any wrongdoing: "One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established."
As well, those who falsely accused someone were sentenced accordingly: "Then shall ye do unto him, as he had thought to have done unto his brother: so shalt thou put the evil away from among you" (see Innocent Unless Proven Guilty).
"19:15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.
When the LORD permitted Satan to strengthen Job's righteous character by challenging it (see How Did The Devil Challenge Job To Commit A Satan?, What Was In The Heart Of Job's Tabernacle?, Job's Prophecy Of The Resurrection, Let Both Grow Together Until The Harvest and The Seed Of Fools), Job's friends presumed Job to be guilty of wrongdoing. They ignored Job's declaration of innocence, with no witnesses of Job having committed evil. They wrongly equated Job's troubles with Job having done something wrong.
"6:1 But Job answered and said,
Fact Finder: Did the Messiah get "a fair trial"?
This Day In History, October 15
1080: Heinrich (in English, Henry) VI of Germany was defeated by Rudolf of Rheinfelden at the Elster River; Rudolf was killed in the battle (see also The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation).
1211: Latin Emperor Henry of Flanders defeated the Nicaean emperor Theodore I Lascaris at the Battle of the Rhyndacus.
1529: Ottoman (Turkish) forces lifted their siege of Vienna, Austria. The military struggles through that time determined whether Europe would be Roman Catholic or Islamic (see A History Of Jerusalem: Constantine and Muhammad).
1582: The Gregorian calendar began in Italy and Spain. 10 days were skipped to correct the accumulated seasonal error of the Julian calendar - October 5 was followed by October 15, although the days of the week were not affected.
1764: Edward Gibbon observed a group of Church of Rome monks singing in the ruined Temple of Jupiter in Rome. The scene inspired him to begin work on his famous The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire (see also A History Of Jerusalem: Pompey And The Caesars).
1783: In France, the Montgolfier brothers' hot air balloon achieved the first human ascent, by Jean-François Pilatre de Rozier.
1815: After his defeat and capture by the British at the Battle of Waterloo the previous June, Napoleon Bonaparte arrived under guard at the island of St. Helena where he was held in exile until he died in 1821.
1839: Britain's Queen Victoria proposed marriage to her first cousin, Albert. The marriage between Victoria and Albert was promoted by their uncle Leopold I, king of the Belgians.
1894: Alfred Dreyfus, a Jewish officer in the French army, was arrested for treason, tried, found guilty and sentenced to life in prison on Devil's Island. He was proven innocent in 1930, 36 years after his conviction. The "Dreyfus Affair" became one of the most famous stories of French history.
1917: Mata Hari (actual name Margaretha Zelle), 41, a Dutch spy for Germany during the First World War, was executed by a French firing squad at the Vincennes Barracks outside Paris.
1945: Vichy French Premier Pierre Laval is executed by a firing squad for his wartime collaboration with the Germans.
1946: Hermann Goering, 53, high-ranking Nazi official under Adolf Hitler, committed suicide in his prison cell 2 hours before his scheduled hanging for war crimes (see also Presidential Quotes On War, Terrorism, Religion).
1962: Day 2 of the Cuban Missile Crisis. President John F. Kennedy was first shown spy-plane photographs taken the previous day of Soviet ballistic missile sites under construction in Cuba. Over the next 2 weeks, the U.S.-Soviet confrontation brought the world to the brink of nuclear war. Kennedy and his military advisors knew that Soviet nuclear ballistic missiles in Cuba were of no more threat to the U.S. than those 5,000 miles away in Russia (ballistic missiles can't be stopped, regardless of where they are launched from), or those off the U.S. east and west coasts on lurking Russian submarines (just as U.S. submarines lurk off the Russian coasts - along with the U.S. missiles in Europe, aimed at Russia), were no different than any Russian missiles in Cuba aimed at the U.S., however after the "Bay of Pigs" Cuban invasion failure, Kennedy feared that another embarrassment over Cuba would have been disastrous to his approval rating as President (as later documented by actual Kennedy associates, including Presidential advisor Theodore "Ted" Sorensen). According to his associates who were present, Kennedy took all of humanity to the brink of nuclear extinction to defend his personal re-election - an election that he never got to run in because he was killed a year later, not by the Russians, but by one of his own fellow citizens, a former U.S. Marine by the name of Lee Harvey Oswald.
1964: Nikita Khrushchev was ousted as First Secretary of the U.S.S.R. Communist Party. He was replaced by Leonid Brezhnev, and Alexi Kosygin as Prime Minister.
1970: Anwar Sadat became president of Egypt, succeeding Gamel Abdel Nasser.
1971: Iran (known until the 1920s as Persia) celebrated 2500 years as a nation. It was Persia that defeated the Babylonian Empire (see The Prophet Daniel: The Hand Writing On The Wall) and freed the people of Judah from their Babylonian captivity (see The Prophecies Of Cyrus of Persia).
1990: Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev won the Nobel Peace Prize for his removal of the Berlin Wall and the "Iron Curtain" in Europe.